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Taking the High Ground: Continental Hill-forts in Bronze Age Contexts


Primas, Margarita (2002). Taking the High Ground: Continental Hill-forts in Bronze Age Contexts. Proceedings of the Prehistoric Society, 68:41-59.

Abstract

Ditches, walls, and palisades are extant in continental Europe from as early as the Neolithic, but important aspects changed in the course of the 2nd millennium BC. A review of the spectrum of dated sites from Central Europe shows that the expansion of metalworking techniques preceded the widespread occupation of high ground. Hill-top sites at crossroads and river crossings proved to be a permanent feature, though shifts in location occurred frequently. The motivation for the construction of walls and ramparts was probably not uniform. Certain walls were clearly built to be seen from afar. Hence, they can be explained as signs of presence and/or prominence. In other cases the aspect of enhanced security deserves special attention. The wide variation in size and regional settings of hill-forts as well as the divergent traces of occupation invalidate any unitary explanation.

Abstract

Ditches, walls, and palisades are extant in continental Europe from as early as the Neolithic, but important aspects changed in the course of the 2nd millennium BC. A review of the spectrum of dated sites from Central Europe shows that the expansion of metalworking techniques preceded the widespread occupation of high ground. Hill-top sites at crossroads and river crossings proved to be a permanent feature, though shifts in location occurred frequently. The motivation for the construction of walls and ramparts was probably not uniform. Certain walls were clearly built to be seen from afar. Hence, they can be explained as signs of presence and/or prominence. In other cases the aspect of enhanced security deserves special attention. The wide variation in size and regional settings of hill-forts as well as the divergent traces of occupation invalidate any unitary explanation.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:National licences > 142-005
Dewey Decimal Classification:Unspecified
Scopus Subject Areas:Social Sciences & Humanities > Archeology (arts and humanities)
Social Sciences & Humanities > Archeology
Language:English
Date:1 January 2002
Deposited On:04 Oct 2018 13:59
Last Modified:15 Apr 2021 14:48
Publisher:Prehistoric Society
ISSN:0079-497X
OA Status:Green
Free access at:Publisher DOI. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1017/s0079497x00001432

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